Eric Holcomb - July 1, 2021 - AP FILE.jpeg
Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb speaks with reporters following a grand opening ceremony at an Abbott medical device production facility in Westfield, Indiana, on Thursday, July 1, 2021. Holcomb said the state needed "to grind this out" as it works to improve Indiana's lagging COVID-19 vaccination rate. (AP Photo/Tom Davies)

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb signed executive orders on Saturday to extend the state's public health emergency for another 30 days.

According to a news release, Executive Orders 21-28 and 21-29 are to maintain assistance to Hoosiers impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Since the start of the pandemic, Indiana has reported 1,018,638 positive cases and 16,134 deaths from complications related to the virus.

"While I am extending the state public health emergency for this next month to extend these critical capabilities directly tied to it, I have instructed my staff and the relevant agencies over the next few weeks to bring me a plan that contemplates options to wind down our executive orders and end the state public health emergency in the near future," Holcomb said in a news release.

According to a news release, several provisions from the previous executive orders were removed, including direction for hospitals to consider reprioritizing or postponing non-emergent procedures and reporting requirements for hospitals about diversions.

Holcomb's executive order does add a provision that allows the health commissioner to issue a standing order to authorize the administration of the COVID-19 immunization to children under 11 years old. It's anticipated that the CDC will approve the vaccine for that age group.

The executive orders expire on Dec. 1.

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